Today is my first day in the classroom officially teaching. I’ve taught both Mr. Geisler’s and Mr. Deemer’s classes piecemeal up until this point. But now I am being given Mr. Geisler’s 2nd period class for good. This will probably last till about the first week of April. I’ve decided to implement some changes in the class that sort of blend Mr. Geisler’s teaching style with my own. Mr. Geisler used an idea called “I am the Historian” when he would give the students short answers, essays and questions about movies or readings. Basically, “I am the Historian” was his way of keeping them on task during fun activities. I’ve decided to make a packet called “I am the Historian” which follows each chapter. Here is the chapter 13 “I am…” packet. It allows the students to read and take guided notes instead of taking notes out of the book. Mr. Geisler had the students read and take notes out of the book each night. An open note quiz would follow each section so that the students’ work would be kept in check. I’ve decided to tie the book to the packet via short answer worksheets and activities so that the students will be able to take an inventory of what exactly they need to know for the assessments rather than copying down everything in the book with the hopes that it will be on the quizzes which are open note. My idea for this packet is to show the students what they need to know and then assess their comprehension of it using closed note short answer quizzes. My teaching style emphasizes comprehension rather than simply hard work. That’s just personal opinion. I think hard work is fine but it should be directly tied to comprehension and application. So that is why I made this packet.
But there was a two hour delay today because of cold temperatures. What a way to start out student teaching.
The first day’s activity is about political parties. It points toward a change in political geography over the past 108 years. I wrote no lesson plan for this. Rather, just an informal lesson summary. I’ll get to formal lesson plan writing in about two weeks. I figure that since I’ll be doing 2.5 months of it that I’ll fulfill the Pitt requirements by about five fold. I think you can get the gist of the activity from the packet. It just shows how political party affiliation changed about 180 degrees from south to north since 1896. I lead the students to the conclusion that political ideologies are not static. Issues, politicians, demographics and parties have changed. And I closed by pointing out that this change seems to happened during the 1920s. Republicans latched on to big business and fiscal conservancy while democrats gravitated toward progressive politics and the immigrant-urban-labor demographic by the end of the 20s. I had to cut the lesson a bit short to fit into the 25 minute schedule of 2nd period. But that was fine. We got through everything that needed to be accomplished.
I assigned section reading and questions of the packet for tomorrow. We’ll see how that goes.
In Mr. Deemer’s Nav class I continue my observations. We started a unit on investments today. Deemer detailed the types of investments. I feel like this is really useful information that the students did not know. I’m glad I get to teach this class too, that’ll happen in about 3 weeks.